Marriage, Separation and Divorce: What Does the Bible Say?

Marriage:
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24 ESV) (see also Matthew 19:4-6)

A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.
(1 Corinthians 7:39 ESV)

Separation:
To the married I give this charge (not I, but the Lord): the wife should not separate from her husband (but if she does, she should remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband), and the husband should not divorce his wife. (1 Corinthians 7:10-11 ESV) –Can you separate from your spouse?  According to scripture, yes, BUT if you do separate from your spouse you should REMAIN UNMARRIED or be RECONCILED to your husband.  When is it okay to leave?  Scripture doesn’t say except for sexual immorality, but I think most people would agree abuse would be one of those reasons.  If you or your children are being physically hurt, LEAVE.  Be safe.  If your husband has threatened your life, LEAVE.  Be safe.  Remember that salvation is impossible with your husband, but it is not impossible with God.  Pray for his salvation.  One day maybe you will be able to be reconciled to him.  In the meantime, or if he never changes, remain unmarried.   Mark 10:12 says that if you divorce your husband and marry another you will be committing adultery.  If you are not scared for your life or your childrens’ lives then don’t rush into leaving.  It may look like the easier route and may indeed be, but remember the first part of this verse is do not be separated from your husband.  

A word of caution: Do not be looking for reasons to leave.  Marriage is something special.  The two become one flesh and this is a profound mystery that refers to Christ and the church (see Ephesians 5:32).  Did Christ leave you?  NO!  GCMers you talk so much  about giving grace to your children, are you giving any grace to your husband?  Christ died for you while you were still a sinner, He gave you something you were not worthy enough for on your own.  We can forgive much because Christ forgave us much.  Do you need to extend grace and forgiveness to your spouse today? 

But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace. For how do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife? (1 Corinthians 7:15-16 ESV)

If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.   
(Romans 12:18 ESV)

Divorce:
So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” They said to him, “Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce and to send her away?” He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.”  (Matthew 19:6-9 ESV)

“It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. (Matthew 5:31-32 ESV)

 To the rest I say (I, not the Lord) that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him. (1 Corinthians 7:12-13 ESV)

 Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.  (Hebrews 13:1-4 ESV)

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2 responses to “Marriage, Separation and Divorce: What Does the Bible Say?

  1. Pingback: Marriage: A Divine Design | World May Believe

  2. What if the wife is Abusive and non submissive?

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